- Split one acorn squash in half (start with knife, drop repeatedly on counter). Scoop out seeds. Put face-down on tinfoil on cookie sheet and roast at 400 for 45 minutes.
- Spend 25 minutes blogging or watching TV. (Or, if you must, doing laundry.)
- Boil 1 lb. pasta in large pot. (I used penne.) Drain and put in large serving bowl.
- Add 1/4 stick butter to now-empty pot, on medium heat. [or oil, or margarine]
- Add pinch crushed red pepper flakes to melting butter. [optional]
- Dice 1 medium onion small; add to pot.
- Mince 1-4 cloves garlic; add to pot. [Optional: add 1/2 tsp ginger paste/minced ginger.]
- Add ~6 oz. frozen chopped spinach. Stir pot periodically.
- Shred a handful of fresh basil and add. [I used frozen basil that I grew. It wilted in the freezer, but kept its flavor.]
- Remove squash from oven. Remove skins and discard. [Recommended but optional: puree squash flesh with blender or food processor.]
- Add squash to pot and stir more.
- Grate an ounce or so of parmesan into pot. [could use sharp cheddar]
- Add 1 cup half-and-half, in thirds, until desired thickness. [or cream, or milk]
- Add lemon juice and salt to taste.
- Optional: top with semi-crisp chopped bacon and gorgonzola before serving.
- Could serve meat-free (or as side with roast). I added diced-up leftover pork chops. I can see chicken or scallops working too.
- And I didn't have any, but thought chopped walnuts might be nice too.
It's gluten-free! Um, except the pasta, but I understand gluten-free varieties are available. I don't know whether the dairy could be successfully edited out, though.
In news unrelated to food, I am realizing from my screwy temperatures that this cycle is probably anovulatory. It looked perfect heading TOWARD peak day. I think I ovulated last cycle, but I know the cycle before was anovulatory, too. It's really getting me down. Before surgery, I ovulated every cycle that I measured. Then after surgery, it took me months to get back to cycles that were even biphasic. And they're still defective. My FSH levels are higher post-surgery, too. This makes a complete run: every single IF treatment or even diagnostic procedure I have tried in the last nearly two years, each intended to effect some improvement that did not happen, has been immediately followed by a significant reduction in the integrity of some element of my reproductive health that previously was working correctly. All the evidence indicates that I am becoming more infertile with treatment, and clearly I wasn't in a good place to begin with.
I know that most any doctor would say that I need to go all in - there are so many things I haven't tried, and a lot stronger medicine available, and even with my lousy ovarian reserve, they can jack me up with more hormones and see what works. (I think the fact that my age still starts with a "2" causes doctors to make optimistic assessments that are totally unsupported by my medical history, but it will be 16 months before I can prove my theory.) But I am a risk-averse personality to start with, and the idea of throwing good money after bad, in any life situation, makes my skin crawl. What will follow the next innocuous treatment - menopause? Osteoporosis? Uterine cancer? No matter what it is, I know that the doctors will say what they always say: there is no possible way that this depressing outcome is connected to the treatment or test I recommended. It's medically impossible. Lawyers have a different analytical method for dealing with a unique stimulus followed (without discernible causation) by an unprecedented response - res ipsa loquitur. That's an automatic win for the plaintiff. Too bad I'm not suing anybody (really, I'm not. The only thing that could make this process more unpleasant is a legal battle. One of my lifetime goals is never to appear in the caption of a lawsuit).
Anyway, I am tired of treatment. But since I am convinced that I need the depo to address the cysts anyway (and I am pathologically putting off scheduling the appointment at which I will lobby for the depo), I am telling myself that when I get off it, the ovulation will either return spontaneously, or respond to some mild treatment. (There's even a medical basis for that little bit of rationalization, which is always nice.)
I have also done further meditating on the subject of my assorted angst related to IF blogging and the crossing-over process [BTW, apologies to JB for my endless comment on her post], and I have come to a conclusion. Though I didn't notice it at the time, very soon after becoming an IF blogger (going on two years!), I became very protective of other IF bloggers. (Of course, there are some with whom I vehemently disagree about various matters, and if the disagreement is wide-enough ranging, I don't follow the blogger, so as to avoid an actual dispute.) And I view all former-infertiles who have borne or adopted children as latent foxes in the henhouse. They can prove themselves not to be dangerous by their conduct, but my default presumption is that they are inadequately sensitive to the effect their sharing has on their former compatriots, and, whether they are adequately sensitive or not, that their sharing about their children is harmful to childless infertile bloggers, and harmful in a context in which those women are most vulnerable to that type of harm. En masse adoptions and BFPs obviously constitute a whole leash of foxes in the henhouse at once, and in that case you probably have to shoot to kill.
Obviously, this system requires me to transfer bloggers from my "defend this person ferociously" group to the "watch like a hawk" designation at some set point, which I think that I probably do, although that point seems to vary widely from person to person. Also, obviously, nobody has asked me to take up against mommy bloggers on her behalf, and very likely nobody needs me to do so. Probably, in fact, I'm simply a pain in the neck. (Well, this part I've never really doubted.)
Realizing this explicitly is, I think, of use to me in recognizing why I react in the way that I do to pregnancy announcements, and, in particular, the post-BFP or post-adoption posts of other bloggers. I think that realizing why exactly I'm so defensive (it goes beyond what I'm feeling at the time; it's a matter of principle, but a principle of which I was more or less unconscious) will help me in deciding whether I ought to act on my impulses and, if so, how. But it's probably important to note here that I don't think my impulses are factually wrong. They are simplistic, and need to be susceptible of thoughtful exception and reservation of judgment until all the facts are in. But I think my paternalistic approach is more or less the right one.
I recognize that, as people have pointed out to me, I do not get to set the terms on which the IFosphere exists. People blog in this realm for lots of reasons, and combinations of reasons. On the other hand, I refuse to take a purely relativistic approach to the IFosphere. Though communities (real and virtual) generally have a raison d'etre more complicated than that dictated in any law or mission statement, their existence grows to have some actual defining principle (even if never articulated), which one should be able to apprehend by observation. My observations of the IFosphere indicate that it is at least as much strained as supported by substantial discussion of babies and pregnancy. Others are free to make their own observations and form different conclusions, which I would be happy to entertain.
So...those are my thoughts for the day.